Environmental Protection Agency

Category archives for Environmental Protection Agency

Dow Chemical’s “exemplary” worker safety program, an utter failure for Brian Johns, 45, burn victim

Serious safety lapses at the Deer Park, TX Dow Chemical plant led to the death of Brian Johns. An OSHA “Star” status is only as good as what happens for workers on the front lines.

Waiting for Obama Administration to deliver on new worker safety regulations, probably shouldn’t hold my breath

Spring 2013 looked like it would be a banner season for progress by the Obama Administration on new worker safety regulations; not so much anymore.

Public Health Classics: Assessing air pollution and health in six U.S. cities, researchers’ findings changed the air we breathe

In the 1974, most of us thought that air pollution was something that just looked and smelled bad. But public health researchers had just launched a study to determine whether air pollution shortened people’s lives. Twenty years later they published their results. It forever changed the way we think about and address air pollutants.

On the departure of Obama’s regulatory czar and cost-benefit analysis

President Obama offered high praise to his regulatory czar on the day Mr. Cass Sunstein announced his resignation. It’s disappointing neither are bold enough to address the grave limits of cost-benefit analysis.

Trying to avoid the “cancer-causing” label, diesel manufacturers join the club

An expert panel convened by the WHO’s Int’l Agency for Research on Cancer is evaluating the scientific evidence on the carcinogenicity of diesel exhaust. In preparation for the meeting, diesel engine manufacturers, oil companies and mining firms hired consultants to re-analyze and critique the epidemiological studies conducted by others to manufacturer doubt about

Public health advocates challenge “except in agriculture” exclusions

Agricultural exceptionalism is a term used to describe the special status awarded to employers and firms involved in agriculture. Proponents argue that the special status is necessary because (1) agricultural products contribute to broad national goals (e.g., providing safe and affordable food, preventing hunger); and (2) farming is inherently risky because of the uncertainty of…

Public health topics shine as finalists for investigative reporting prize

Communities affected by contaminated air, water and soil, workers retaliated for complaining about safety issues, and vulnerable groups abused by organizations charged with protecting them, are topics at the heart of public health. This week they are especially recognized by the Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard University’s Kennedy…

White House message: new regulations and election year don’t mix

The Republicans’ mantra about the burden of regulations seems to have cast a spell on the Obama Administration’s attitude about promoting new regulatory initiatives. My observations about this were reinforced this week when I read the Administration’s statement accompanying its Fall 2011 regulatory plan. The message is clear: new regulations and an election year don’t…

Beware of Congressmen who claim they are cutting red tape, health and safety protections are on the chopping block

Funny how a bill touted by Members of Congress as one that will “cut red tape” will actually add a dozen new steps before a rule to protect people’s health or safety is put in place. Last week, several Republican and Democratic Senators and Representatives did just that when they introduced the “Regulatory Accountability Act”…

White House’s ozone edict tells EPA to break the law

Last Friday when the White House told Environmental Protection Agency administrator Lisa Jackson to drop her plans to revise the national ambient standard for ozone, it seemed like just another example of President Obama caving to business interests. Others were quick to remind me though that bowing to business is not the half of it:…